Cleveland businessman Michael Forlani to appear in federal court on corruption charges
Could face up to 8 years in federal prison
Ron Regan, newsnet5.com
5:50 AM, Jan 8, 2013
12:21 PM, Jan 8, 2013
AKRON, Ohio - Cleveland businessman Michael Forlani is scheduled to appear in federal court Tuesday morning where he faces up to eight years in prison for his role in bribing former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora and others in return for lucrative contracts.
Forlani was the owner of Doan Pyramid Electric and pleaded guilty in August to 13 corruption-related charges involving thousands of dollars in bribes.
A plea agreement filed on Aug. 30 spells out his role in the federal corruption probe that, in addition to Forlani, has resulted in more than 60 elected elected officials and businessmen either being convicted or pleading guilty to bribery charges.
Federal prosecutors have told U.S. District Court Judge Sara Lioi to expect as many as 16 witnesses who could testify at Forlani's sentencing about bribes given by Forlani in exchange for contracts.
Among them is former Cleveland City Councilwoman Sabra Pierce Scott, who pleaded guilty to accepting $2,000 in bribes from Forlani for her help in securing a major contract in her Cleveland ward.
Pierce Scott entered into a plea agreement and has been working with federal prosecutors in their case against Forlani.
Tuesday's sentencing hearing could continue for several days due to the number of witnesses that may be called to testify.